Frog Fractions was a work of insane genius. On the off-chance you haven't experienced it yet, go give it a try when you've next got an hour or so to spare.
The brilliance of the game was how it continually subverted expectations and took its players down some seriously bizarre twists and turns. None of the triggering conditions for said twists and turns were made explicit, however; creator Jim Crawford notes that he created it "explicitly to evoke the air of mystery that all video games held in the 1980s before the era of endless preview coverage and official strategy guides took that feeling away from us, seemingly permanently." And he certainly succeeded in that; the whole experience was genuinely unpredictable, and both hilarious and memorable as a result.
Now Crawford wants to make a sequel.
Crawford knows that he's never going to recapture the same feelings someone playing Frog Fractions for the first time with no foreknowledge of it will feel, but he's going to try anyway. In a ballsy move, he's going to release it under a completely different name and not tell anyone where, when or how it is going to be released; instead, someone purchasing an innocent-looking piece of software may well instead find themselves wrapped up in the crazy world of Frog Fractions once again.
Crawford has turned to Kickstarter to fund the sequel, and is asking for $60,000 to help fund the development process.
"I made Frog Fractions in a little over a year," he says on the pitch page. "I had a day job, no budget but a lot of volunteer help. In designing it, I made the decision to trust you, the player, to figure out how to unlock the game's secrets without being guided every step of the way. In this Kickstarter, I'm asking you to, in turn, trust me. What do you think I could do with a budget?"
Crawford notes that much of the information on the Kickstarter page is kept deliberately vague because he wants people to "pay for a surprise" of a similar ilk to the original game -- though he does say the new game will be considerably larger in scope than the original and will take several play sessions to fully explore. He notes that certain rewards will be withheld until "the Jig is Up" -- in other words, someone figures out where Frog Fractions 2 has been hidden, and articles start to appear in the enthusiast press about it. If you happen to figure out the game's secret identity before everyone else, you can send Crawford an email and get yourself a download code whenever you like.
Due to the amount of secrecy over the project, most of the backer rewards don't relate directly to the game, though Crawford particularly highlights the soundtrack options at the $20 and $25 pledge levels. Featuring contributions from Danny Baranowsky, Disasterpeace, Ben Prunty and more, the albums' track listings read like a Who's Who of digitally distributed indie music in 2014. Other rewards include artwork and voicemail messages from people who contributed to the original game, plus the opportunity to hang out with Crawford in the Bay Area (or via Skype) and make a small game together.
With 28 days still to go on the campaign, the Frog Fractions Kickstarter has already attracted $26,430 from 933 backers. If you'd like to be a part of Crawford's bold and bizarre experiment, check out the official page here.